MSW, GradDipEd, B.Soc.Sc
A bit about me and why I started The Perinatal S P A C E. I am a Social Worker with a career spanning over ten years working in mental health education and counselling. I now focus my practice in providing support during the perinatal period. I made Darwin my home eight years ago, and enjoy it with my husband and son.
You might have come here looking for a parenting expert, if so I’m afraid you’re in the wrong place. To find a parenting expert equipped to meet the unique needs of your family, you’re going to have to search a lot closer to home- THAT’S where I come in!
My philosophy in helping people is that individuals are their own experts and have strength to overcome difficult situations, providing they have access to the right support, information and encouragement. This applies to helping women and new parents in the perinatal period with; support tailored for stages throughout this period, evidence based information and of course- encouragement.
I provide support through both education and counselling, the first skill set requires an ability to be a good talker, the second a good listener and I’ve received much feedback over the years that I’m good at both.
My education approach
New parents are constantly seeking information, unfortunately a lot of the information available to them is not based on reliable evidence. My integrity as a professional requires that I educate only based on evidence that is backed by reliable research, this said- knowledge isn’t much good to us unless we have ways that we can apply it to our own situations. We’ve all attended various classes and left feeling like ‘I didn’t get much out of that’- this is probably because there was not enough focus on how to apply what was taught (I’m having flash backs of high school mathematics!) Understanding how to apply what you have learnt is the real focus in all my sessions. For a woman and her baby the first weeks and months following childbirth are a time of complex needs and emotions and there’s a lot to learn. I have many years of experience educating adults on complex topics related to mental health and have a passion about making information pertinent to postpartum easily understandable and relatable, with lots of interaction and opportunity for practice built into my sessions.
My counselling approach
We try as best we can to engage in activities that protect our physical health ie regular exercise and eating well, and whilst it’s fairly common to see a doctor at the first sign of a physical symptom somethings not right, many of us don’t seek counselling unless we feel our mental health is really suffering. Mental health exists on a continuum, moving up and down depending on a number of factors- like many things, early intervention can prevent us moving down that continuum into poor mental health. Research shows us that this is particularly true for mental illness experienced by mums and dads in the perinatal period. Wherever you may find yourself at a particular point in time, my counselling practice is focused on moving you upward into good or even better mental health. In conversation with you I am always conscious that you have strength to overcome difficulty and apply therapeutic techniques to asist you in locating these strengths so that you can utilise them- in particular techniques proven to have particular benefit to new parents.The therapeutic approaches I use in practice include reality therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, as well as mindfulness.